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A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 12 eBook

Robert Kerr (writer)
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 659 pages of information about A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels Volume 12.
a thousand per cent.  This behaviour was so cruel to the natives, and so injurious to us, that I ventured to complain of it to the resident, and the other two gentlemen, Le Cerf and the secretary.  The resident, with becoming spirit, reprimanded the soldiers; but it produced so little effect that I could not help entertaining suspicions that Le Cerf connived at these practices, and shared the advantages which they produced.  I suspected him also of selling arrack to my people, of which I complained, but without redress; and I know that his slaves were employed to buy things at the market which his wife afterwards sold to us for more than twice as much as they cost.  The soldiers were indeed guilty of many other irregularities:  It was the duty of one of them by rotation to procure the day’s provision for the whole guard, a service which he constantly performed by going into the country with his musket and a bag; nor was the honest proveditor always content with what the bag would contain; for one of them, without any ceremony, drove down a young buffalo that belonged to some of the country people, and his comrades not having wood at hand to dress it when it was killed, supplied themselves by pulling down some of the pallisadoes of the fort.  When this was reported to me, I thought it so extraordinary that I went on shore to see the breach, and found the poor black people repairing it.

On the 26th, a sloop laden with rice was sent out from this place in order to land her cargo at Macassar; but after having attempted it three days she was forced to return.  The weather was now exceedingly tempestuous, and all navigation at an end from east to west till the return of the eastern monsoon.  On the same day two large sloops that were bound to the eastward anchored here, and the next morning also a large ship from Batavia, with troops on board for the Banda Islands; but none of the crew of any of these vessels were suffered to speak to any of our people, our boats being restrained from going on board them, and theirs from coming on board us.  As this was a mortifying restriction, we requested Mr Swellingrabel to buy us some salt meat from the large ship; and he was so obliging as to procure us four casks of very good European meat, two of pork, and two of beef.

On the 28th a fleet of more than an hundred sail of the small country vessels, called proas, anchored here; their burden is from twelve to eighteen and twenty tons, and they carry from sixteen to twenty men.  I was told that they carried on a fishery round the island, going out with one monsoon, and coming back with the other, so as always to keep under the lee of the land:  The fish was sent to the China market, and I observed that all these vessels carried Dutch colours.

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